Basketball Shoes

Written by Jeremy Horelick
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Too many athletes overlook the importance of buying a durable and high-quality pair of basketball shoes, which is astounding when you consider how much time they spend pounding their feet into the ground. Bad shoes can lead not only to foot and ankle problems, but leg, hip, and even back pain as well. That's because alignment begins with your feet and moves up to influence the rest of your body.

The first thing to remember when searching for basketball shoes is that there's no substitute for high-tops. Tennis shoes, cross-trainers, and even mid-tops are inferior in every way when it comes to on-court use. They provide less support in the arches, less across the bridge of the foot, and, most of all, less in the ankles, where the majority of injuries occur. So what should you look for in a set of basketball shoes apart from snug reinforcement around the ankle?

The Other Critical Components of Basketball Shoes

As with running shoes and tennis shoes, your basketball shoes should have a reinforced toe box, midsole, and heel. The longer and harder you play, the more you wear down the rubber that separates your foot from the wood, concrete, or asphalt. After just a month of daily scrimmaging, it's not unheard of to wear holes straight through the sole of the shoe.

Unfortunately, most young players only replace their shoes after they've practically fallen off their feet. By that point, it's too late to correct many of the small ankle and toe problems that can grow into more serious injuries and eventually sideline players altogether. Make sure that you not only choose a shoe with polyethylene reinforcement strips, but that you change your shoes every couple of months (or even monthly) as well. The extra hundred bucks you spend can save you thousands in medical bills down the road.

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